Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Chicago or Bust

Well it's that time again...time to go to Chicago for another surgery. This one, as stated in the previous post, is surgery #4 of 5. In this surgery Dr. Bauer will remove her big 243cc bubble, remove the remaining 20% of her nevus, & then stretch the skin over where the nevus was. So off we go to Chicago for trip #4. I have no idea what it is about this surgery/trip but both Dustin & I just didn't want to come. We were not motivated to pack, not motivated to clean the car out, & not motivated to even THINK about going. We simply just didn't want to do it. Unfortunately for all of us, her bubble can't stay in her forever & we had to go to Chicago.

Thursday the 20th was my big 3-0 & of course, I got sick. What a surprise. (See next post on that one...) So Friday the 21st I was so NOT in the mood to pack. But it had to be done because we were leaving bright & early the next morning to go. I had no motivation so I didn't end up even bringing out my suitcase until 2:30pm! Yes, folks, I started packing just hours before we were supposed to leave. I just couldn't get up & do it. I was feeling horrible & just not in the mood. But I did it, none the less. And of course, I forgot all the little nice things that I usually take with me (such as my Scentsy air freshener, shampoo, bath toys for the girls, hand soap, & other little things that are just nice to have when we're gone from home for such a long time).

We were supposed to leave as soon as we woke up...but we didn't get up until about 9:30am. I was sick, the girls, were tired, & Dustin didn't have any motivation to leave either. So we finally packed up the car, got the girls loaded in, go the house all locked up, & left town at noon. Yes...NOON. UGH! We were supposed to stop in Cheyenne that first night (about a 10 hour drive from home), Omaha the 2nd night (about 8 hours from Cheyenne), & be in Chicago the 3rd day (Monday)...(about 8 hours from Omaha). Let's see how this goes...
Brooke...bored with reading

We ended up stopping for the night after only 5 hours of driving. Unfortunately for us all...the mommy was sick. I tried sleeping but that never works well for me in the car. Plus, while Dustin is driving, I have to get the girls what they need (movie changed, new snacks, more milk, different toys, etc.) so I coudn't really sleep anyways. We stopped in Buffalo, WY around 5pm & because I married the man who would become absolutely Worlds Best Dad, I was able to be in bed around 6:30pm. I hardly slept at all, but got a few hours in here or there. At least I wasn't up late with the girls, which was nice. We were up & out by about 10am, which wasn't bad...considering.......

We crossed into a brand new state for all 4 of us...Nebraska! Shortly after crossing the border we saw signs for the Pony Express Station. So of course the mail carrier in the car just had to go see what it was!

Here's Dustin in front of the Pony Express station in Gothenburg, NE
This Pony Express station is one of the last ones in the country. It's now a gift shop/information center. Dustin was even able to get a little gift for his fellow carriers at home...which they'll have to wait until he gets home to see. :o)

We drove, & drove, & drove. Actually DUSTIN drove & drove & drove. Thank the Lord for such an amazing husband because he was amazing. I should probably point out that I'm usually the driver in our family. We're backwards from "normal" families where the man drives. But Dustin doesn't do good at night & he's horrible in cities, so I just do it. So for him to drive for such a long distance & for such a long time was awesome.

We ended up stopping around 8'ish...which was now 9'ish b/c of the time change, in North Platte, NE, which is about 1/3 to 1/2 way through the state. We got up Monday AM & were actually on the road by 9:30am! Very impressive for a sickie & her family!! According to Bessy (our GPS lady) we had 12 hours of driving so we knew we wouldn't make it there that night.

But we drove...

And drove...

And drove...

Until we were driving into the sunset...
Sunset in Iowa

We crossed into another first for us...Iowa!! And we kept driving. Dustin was driving, I was the fetcher. "Mommy will you change my movie?" "Mommy will you get me a snack?" "Mommy will you get me the book?"....you know....

Once we crossed about the 1/2 way point of Iowa we realized we only had about 4 driving hours left. If we made it from Des Moines to the eastern part of the state that would have been 2 hours. Then from the far western part of IL to Chicago was 2 hours as well.....making the remainder of our trip just 4 hours. Well we can do that!!!!!!

So thanks to 2 AMAZING children, an amazing husband, & some great traffic, we were able to make it to Chicago Monday night. We got in late...like almost 11pm, but at least we got here. I drove the last 3 hours because it was night & we were in the city for some of it, but Dustin drove 21 out of our 24 hours. So awesome! So we got in, got our room, & went right to bed!!!

Today (Tuesday) we woke up & were able to see our great friend Amie from Arizona. Her son, Zac, had surgery Thursday & they're going home tomorrow so today was our only day to spend together. We decided to go to the mall & just walk around. It's close to the hotel so no long drives for the girls, which was nice. We ate lunch & then let the girls play on the toys & in the play area...oh and the train, of course!!!

Brookie & mommy on the train (Cali was boycotting the camera)

Cali, Brooklyn, & Daddy in the play area. (Cali is in the purple shirt at the bottom of the picture by the turtle, Brooklyn is in the red shirt at the top by the little ladybug, & Dustin is sitting in the top left of the picture watching the girls.)

Daddy & Brookie walking around (with Brooklyn's camera around her left shoulder)

Unfortunately, I think the 14 hours on the road yesterday & then the getting up & doing stuff today just wore me out because I was not feeling well today at all. I am still so sick & my ears are giving me problems. My antibiotics are making me feel horrible, too. I was super nauseated, hot, then cold, had cold sweats, was weak, was hungry but didn't want anything to eat, have lost about 5 pounds, was dizzy, felt like I was going to pass out, & am just plain BLAH today. I can ALWAYS rally & do whatever with people even if I don't feel well. But I think the combination of yesterday & being sick just took it's toll on me. So the 4 of us called it a day & went back to the hotel while Amie, Zac, & Amie's grandma stayed back. Brookie & I napped for an hour & then Amie & I went to Target for a few things I forgot at home (like shampoo), then got dinner, & came back, ate it, then came back to the room. I'm still feeling quite horrible, but I'm hoping & praying I'm on the mend.....

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